Hurl Sack

But sometimes in the depths of semi-disaster, one can find inspiration.

This is a new product I figure would sell like hot cakes.

New Cubs Hurl Sacks®.

You know that queasy feeling you get watching the Cubs, and it's ohh, say the
7th and they're clinging to a tiny lead and in comes, well...any one of the Cubs relievers.

Wouldn't it be great to have a Kleenex-sized box of barf bags at the ready, on the side table right next to your frosty cold one?

"Wow" says Bob Brenly, "Marmol is missing the plate by SIX INCHES."

"Ball three." says Len.

Right about now you could just pull out a handy Hurl Sack®, open her up and start gagging.

"He walked him and the bases are loaded."


"Lou's gonna visit the mound."


"He's calling for Aaron Heilman."

"No, wait. He wants Gregg."

And finally, you know, just let it rip.



Toss your Cracker Jacks.

All without ever leaving the comfort of your couch!

All without any mess!

Plus, I guess you could do Yankee Hurl Sacks® or Padre Hurl Sacks® - any team would work.

Man, this is seriously a good idea.

Scott Boras, if you're reading this, gimme a call.

I think I'm gonna need an agent.

Tim Souers is the illustrator and author of Cubby Blue and appreciates the opportunity to guest blog here at The Cub Reporter.



Nice painting. The reason you may be sick, though, is you're apparently prone to drinking Bud products.

a quick thank you to Tim for honoring our site with his awesome artwork and insights. We hope it becomes a semi-regular be nice everyone.

TCR gets a 20% split on all hurl sack sales. :)

What Rob said.

HI! BILLY MAYS HERE FOR THE CUBS HURL SACK! The Cubs Hurl Sack is the convienent, safe way to vomit during Cubs baseball. The secret is in the odor-eating blue pinstripes. It's the polite, sanitary way to vomit in your own seat!

If you call now, we'll give you the Cubs Hurl Sack for just $19.99. BUT, WAIT! THERE'S MORE! I'M GOING TO DOUBLE THE OFFER! That's TWO Cubs Hurl Sacks for just $19.99. BUT I'M STILL NOT DONE! If you call now, we'll give you the vomit inducing Old Style Beer, a $7 value, ABSOLUTELY FREE! Just pay seperate shipping and handling. So, you get two Cubs Hurl Sacks and the Old Style Beer FOR JUST 19 DOLLARS AND 99 CENTS. CALL NOW! HERE'S HOW TO ORDER!

All those caps are almost as annoying as actually watching Billy Mays on TV. Wasn't sure that would translate very well, but it sure did.

it worked well....

Awesome product. Would like to suggest one to compliment the agressive side of all Cub fans' passive-agressive natures. A mini-Gatorade machine with a mini-bat so you can beat it all to hell when the bullpen is called up or when Soto can't put down a bunt or practically almost any other moment this season.

How about the Cub's brand leaf blower... now saves aren't the only thing the Cubs can blow....


A Cubs parachute for ledge-jumpers.

Cubs brand diarrhea medication, to stop the runs.

Wow, I don't think I have ever seen Buick associated with puking before. I think that's pretty damn funny!

I'm no business expert, but I'm pretty sure this means the repo man will show up soon to wheel off Soriano on a two wheel cart.

I linked to the Trib article in Cubnut's game recap...

from what I get, Zell could care less about running the Trib and if the creditors wanted to keep him or lose him, that's fine by him. As for the sale of the Cubs, I would think it would only help. They just want their money by this point and Ricketts is their best option.

speaking of the sale...uh oh

The Sports Business Journal has multiple sources saying the
exclusive negotiating period between the Tribune Co. and Cubs bidder
Tom Ricketts expired last month. The Tribune entered exclusive
negotiations with Ricketts in January, when the company selected him
over two other bidders to buy the Cubs, Wrigley Field and a 25 percent
stake in regional cable network Comcast SportsNet.

There was no comment from representatives for Ricketts or the Tribune.

According to the SBJ article, the problem appears to be the level of
involvement Tribune's WGN would have in the Cubs post-sale. WGN has
been paying below market rates for broadcast rights to the games, and
Ricketts wants that to change, sources said. The Tribune side has said
that the terms bidders agreed to in November outlined WGN's role, the
sources said.

What is not at issue is Ricketts' financing for the deal, the
sources said. Another SBJ source expressed optimism a deal would be
done soon, saying it would be hard for Tribune to go back out to the
market looking for another buyer. Ricketts has his debt and equity
lined up for the $900 million offer, though he is seeking up to a $50
million price reduction because of the WGN issue.


So I'm seriously business-stupid... this is saying WGN & the Cubs (both owned by the Trib) had a deal where the Cubs would cut WGN a huge break on broadcasting rights (because they happen to have the same parent company) and Ricketts says screw that. Is that right?

I don't see anything wrong with Ricketts position on this.

Frankly, it stinks. WGN's tv deal was no secret before Ricketts made his bid.

When and if the Ricketts family takes over, it'll be interesting to see if they handle their players' contracts the same way they're dealing with Zell.

WGN's tv deal was no secret before Ricketts made his bid.

Curious about this statement, the few articles in the business journals lately couldn't even nail down the specifics of the contract, other than it was negotiated sometime last fall and it could be up to 10 years.

If I have been following it correctly, the TV contracted would have been negotiated after the potential suitors were given the detailed financials on the Cubs, which means it would have been precluded from any offer, because that offer would have a clause stating that any substantial changes that had taken place would open the deal for renegotiation which is what they're now doing.

I believe they've already said the exact details of the TV/Radio deal were not known until farther into the process, which is why Ricketts is throwing a fit. His side has issued a statement that WGN is underpaying by 40-50 million per season for their TV/Radio rights. That didn't matter when it was the same owner, but why should a new owner put an extra 40-50 million per year into Zell's greedy hands?

Zell's angle on all this is incredible. Not only does he want a fortune for the deal, but he wants it to fit into his sneaky ways so he doesn't have to pay taxes on a 1 billion dollar transaction. Let's stop and think about that. Zell is the same as the shitty CEO's that have helped do their part to destroy our economy. He guts companies, fires thousands of employees, then sells off the parts to line his pockets with no regard for anyone but his bottom line. Now he's so greedy he refuses to pay taxes on his billion dollar profits. He's a scumbag.

Which is exactly why I believe NO substantial new player acquisition will happen, other than near-net zero trade deals, before the deadline. We are stuck with Bradley, unless he as traded to an AL team - as AZ PHIL suggested sis weeks ago.

Should A-Ram not come back properly from injury, season is fucked.

That's not right though. The player budget would be set, and it would include some money for mid-season trades, just like it has the last 6 seasons. A-Rod isn't coming on board for prospects, but there's probably some room.

read the word "substantial", Mr. Literal.

Sure, maybe they could acquire someone like VizcIano, but under the circumstances, but under the circumstances they most likely will not be getting someone with any pedigree. Again, I am not ruling out trades if cash leveled.

Well, Mr Literal 'substantial' is an ambiguous word. They probably have $4 million budgeted. Would you consider Hanley Ramirez a 'substantial' acquisition? What about Evan Longoria? What about Mark DeRosa?

yep, wonder how long it will be until Zell hires Julia Roberts to hangout in his hotel room for a week because he's playing the role of Richard Gere's character in Pretty Woman.

we don't know the specifics, but I touched upon it a few weeks back.

sounds like last fall Zell and Trib gave WGN a 10-yr sweetheart deal on Cubs broadcasting rights for radio and television. The Zell and Tribune plan to keep WGN, so it certainly was in there best interest to keep the Cubs on there as long as possible and a cut rate.

Rickets, after reviewing the contract, decided that isn't gonna fly. Zell and Trib seem to want believe that it was part of what they agreed on in November.

It's hardly news that the Cubs and Trib-owned entities have sweetheart deals. Every bidder knew or should have known this...

e.g. BP commented on the Cubs situation back in 2005

As the late great Doug Pappas reported two years ago, the Cubs regularly report less local media revenue than their crosstown rival White Sox, despite the fact that until this October you couldn't find a White Sox fan in Chicago with Google Earth. From there, let's allow sports economist Andy Zimbalist to pick up the story, from his book "May the Best Team Win":

So, what's going on? The Cubs are owned by the Tribune Corporation, which happens also to own WGN. The Tribune Corporation transfers revenue away from the Cubs and correspondingly lowers the costs of WGN. According to Broadcasting & Cable, the industry's authoritative source, the Cubs' local media earnings were $59 million. [In 2001; by 2003 this figure was $63 million. -ND] If the Cubs had reported this figure instead of $23.6 million, then their reported $1.8 million loss would have become a $33.6 million profit in 2001!

well neat...

but pretty much what Neal said, if the timeline that has been reported has been correct, books were opened up to potential buyers sometime last spring/summer and then Trib negotiated their own deal in the fall, most likely w/o asking or telling Rickets the exact details of what they were negotiating with themselves. 

Of course without being in the room for any of this, it's impossible to know exactly what was known and not known at what time, but considering Rickets has wanted to own the Cubs all his life, he's probably risking jeopardizing the deal for good reason.

When purchasing real estate, this is typically what title insurance is used for--to verify that no liens have arisen that don't yet show up on a title search for the buyer to be able to see. With a business deal like this, there is no way of verifying what is going on behind the closed doors of the company you're buying after the snapshot of the books and legal commitments that have been revealed as of a particular date. This is why Rickets I'm sure has a clause that allows him to walk away from the deal in the event that something like this happens...which it clearly has and he seems to be threatening to do just that.

Ultimately it's terribly unprofessional unless it's a negotiative strategy wherein you're trying to see if you can negotiate the deal to a different conclusion wherein this new commitment discounts the price by less than what the deal gains you on its flipside. Without knowing too much about this deal, I would guess that if this is the reason, the primary concern was that the deal with Rickets may fall apart and this deal in some way lessens the long term risks in the event of a postponed or renegotiated sale. In that event it certainly wouldn't demonstrate a lot of good faith on the part of the seller and regardless of value to the deal could torpedo the whole thing by eroding the buyer's trust. This is pure speculation, mind you.

That or Zells folks are dirty scoundrels who assumed that Rickets' attorneys would be too dumb to notice this. Stranger things have happened in larger deals than this.

right now Guzman >> Marmol, even with the same work load.

(thankful for the TCR bullpen usage chart)

I think our fearless manager should stop abusing Marmol's arm.

But he should not compensate by abusing Guzman's arm.

patton, waddell, and asscan can only be pitched once a week or it'll disturb the multi-player monopoly game they have going on. they're already mad they've had to replace k.hill's player with waddell.

marmol, gregg, and guzman can keep holding those "down by 2-5 runs" games within a few solo shots by soriano.

anyone know a site or way to slice and dice historical team records? Like if I wanted to find out the Cubs record versus the Mets over the years? each decade? @ Wrigley...etc.

Besides going year by year through

Maybe it's somewhere else on, but can't seem to find it.

much obliged....

When I was looking at the Cubs records over the years, I was thinking about how easy it used to be to make the world series (win a 8 team division), compared to now. Then I was thinking about how much bigger the leagues are then they used to be. Then I came upon a sort of startling thought about parity between the two leagues. It used to be that the AL was bigger (14 teams) and the NL always won the All-Star game. Now the NL is bigger (16 teams) and the AL always wins the all-star game. Which seems counter-intuitive, because a bigger pool should mean more good players to choose from. And the AL has been kicking the NL's ass for several years in interleague, so there's no real debate about which is the better league. Lots of people want to point to the Yankees, but what if it's more simple than that.

In the NL you've got a 4 in 16 chance of making the playoffs (roughly) a 2 in 16 chance of making the championship series and a 1 in 16 chance of making the world series, and finally a 1 in 32 chance of winning the world series (assuming all things are equal). Lets say that the playoffs makes you $10 million, the CS $2 million, the WS $5 million and winning it all $10 million. The average AL team would make about $.5 million more a year in that scenario (not looking at divisions which would make it a little more in the AL team's favor). Maybe that money goes part of the way in explaining the disparity in the league records and all star games.

And you're welcome.

That difference is negligible. A better indicator would be comparing average payrolls for the AL and NL over the last couple of years. The AL outspends the NL by a considerable margin.

The lowest payroll in the AL? Athletics $62,310,000
The lowest payroll in the NL? Marlins $36,814,000

Three other teams in the NL also come in lower than the A's

Another equalizing factor, at least over the last 4-8 years, has been that the very best-run small-market franchises - Minnesoat, Oakland and recently Tampa - are all in the AL.

It isn't too tough for most big-market teams to buy competitiveness, but the differences between the small markets of each league has been pronounced this decade.

Yes, but are they the best franchises because they're in the playoffs or are they in the playoffs because they're the best? I wouldn't throw Tampa Bay in with those others. Give MN and Oakland 8 years of top 8 picks, then you'll see some good teams.

Any of you TCR author types going to be doing your thing tomorrow? Think I am going to do a new, different, draft study if anyone wants to put it up.

I should have a draft preview for tomorrow.

"I don't see anything wrong with Ricketts position on this."

I agree, Ricketts should be able to put the contract up for a fully open bidding process, and let the best broadcast bid win. This type of arrangement is becoming more exposed over the past few years - NBC was outed by none other than David Duchovney, who sued them for a greater share of royalties from "The X - Files" reruns on USA cable network. It turned out that NBC was selling the rerun rights at below - market rates to USA, primarily because they also happened to own most of that network as well.

Cardinals losing 4-2 in the 7th inning. Harden pitching rehab assignment tonight. Ho-hum. Off day.

Rockies, behind Jason Marquis (8-4, 3.98), win to finish a 4-game sweep of the Cards in St. Louis.


Marquis now leads the NL in wins while pitching for a losing team.

Funny stuff.

Somebody please tell Geo to hit to RF -- everyone is pitching him away, he tries to pull everything....DP grounder to short.

How the fuck did he hit into a GIDP when the Cubs didn't even play?

it's that kinda season.

marmol also dressed up in disguise and threw 20 pitches of relief in the COL game in order to stay in game shape.

more on Harden and Bradley slated to start Tuesday.

Anyone want Josh Fields because he seems to want a trade:

He might be our best bet as any trade they make because of the sale has to be bascially be revenue neutral, and he makes less than 750k. He was heating up right before the Beckham call-up and have a 23 homer 70 rbi season to his credit.

Josh Fields? Really? *groan* At least with Josh Fields around Fontenot wouldn't look so bad.

in All-Star voting...Ibanez moves to the top of the NL list, as does Jimmy Rollins.

Phils must have had a bunch of home games before the deadline. Seems like they're a week behind counting these.

My fantasy team wishes he was playing like an all star. Hooray for blowing round 1 on a .222 batting average in June.

"Good teams win games. Horse[expletive] teams have meetings. We're having a lot of meetings right now."

Has to be Ozzie, who else uses horseshit all the time like he does.

Harden goes 4.2 IP, 6 K, 1 ER for Iowa. I'm hoping he was pulled after 4.2 because of a pitch count or something... 70 pitches.

In other news Miles goes 0-5 with 3 strikeouts for Iowa. They're going to get fed up with him pretty soon and send him down to Tennessee.

Nobody liked Miles when he was signed, nobody likes him now. It's as if Hendry is the only person in the world who liked the idea of signing Aaron Freaking Miles. It's so irritating. I know they can't put together 25 all-stars, but why put a guy in the lineup who is an automatic out? For the same batting average I'd much rather have Blanco playing and at least see some flashy defense.

I think it was 75 pitches or 5 innings...missed it by that much.

I saw Harden tonight; will post my observations in the morning...

Dude? Major d*** tease. At least tell us he was just pulled because of a pitch count and not another injury.

"Harden pitched tonight in Iowa: did his arm fall off? STAY TUNED."

No injury! He was free & easy; just don't have time for more right now - don't worry!

Geovany Soto had a breakthrough season last year, earning National League Rookie of the Year honors, but has regressed in '09. Micah Hoffpauir is contributing in a limited role, while Jake Fox, recently called up after tearing up the Pacific Coast League, can't find his way into the Cubs' lineup. Ryan Theriot has been consistent at short but lacks the dominant offensive numbers to make him an impact player. At this point, it appears that the top position player drafted by the Cubs in the last decade was an obscure catcher selected in the 38th round of the 2002 draft. That catcher turned out to be Randy Wells, now one of the most dominating rookie pitchers in the National League.

I love you Paul make all us bloggers look smart.

Cubs 2005 6th round pick 3B Kyle Reynolds (son of ex-MLB SS Craig Reynolds) has been released after "hitting" just 150/195/252 with 30 K and only two HR in 114 PA (combined) between Tennessee and Iowa, making room on the AAA Iowa roster for INF Luis Rivas, who was reactivated after spending the last six weeks on the DL with a hamstring injury. Rivas had three hits (a single, a double, and a HR) and four RBI in a rehab start at Fitch Park last Friday. As for Reynolds, he hit 21 HR combined between Daytona and Tennessee in 2007, but he's been going strictly backward ever since.

With the release of Reynolds, only three players selected and signed by the Cubs out of the 2005 draft remain in the organization (LHP Jayson Ruhlman and RHP Jake Muyco at AA Tennessee, and OF Dylan Johnston at Daytona).

2005 #1 pick LHP Mark Pawelek was released in Spring Training (he is now in the Cincinnati Reds organization), #2 pick LHP Donald Veal was selected by the Pirates in last December's Rule 5 Draft, and #3 pick RHP Mark Holliman was selected by the Brewers in the AAA Phase of last December's Rule 5 Draft.

Catcher Michael Brenly was selected by the Cubs in the 43rd round of the 2005 draft but did not sign (instead opting to attend UNLV), although the Cubs did draft him again last year and he did sign at that time.

By comparison, 17 of the players drafted & signed by the Cubs in the 2006 draft are still in the organization.

Wow. So not only did the Cubs flub the entire draft that year, but our top three guys are now all with other teams in the division.


There appears to be an interview with Tim Wilken about the '09 draft at Inside the Ivy, but it's premium-only, so if anyone has a subscription there, a summation would be just wonderful.

I've got a draft preview coming up sometime today....would have been this morning, but too much wine last night and I deleted the bulk of my work.

As for the article, it's a whole lot of nothing....he basically says the commish office is cracking down about talking about individual players so there's no tease as to who they'll pick. Otherwise, likes athletes from the middle of the diamond (CF, SS), drafts the best player available regardless of position and if there is a need in the system it's left-handed pitching. He does feel they're pretty well stocked at catcher and shortstop. No real blue chip catching prospects in the system necessarily, but good depth and not like there's a big-time catching prospect in the draft this year that they could grab. 

Interesting and thanks.

You've got mail.

Wow, for someone who very recently put a WS-winning team together, Kenny Williams is kind of baseball-stupid.

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  • Check out John Arguello at Cubs Den for great analysis & photos from Cubs AZ Instructs


    Arizona Phil 5 hours 36 min ago view
  • soler + hammel for mike trout is pretty much a sure thing. *nods*

    crunch 10 hours 54 min ago view
  • Not an inspired outing by Rondon. Seemingly got ahead of every hitter but had no swing and miss pitch today, slider had no bite.

    Somebody give Soler some smelling salts - yeesh

    Eric S 10 hours 55 min ago view
  • that runner scores on a single...

    The E-Man 11 hours 6 min ago view
  • So where do you think Soler will be traded to this off season?

    jacos 11 hours 8 min ago view
  • And right on cue he throws to third with no chance to get runner on 2nd so the batter takes 2nd easily. How long has he been playing baseball??

    The E-Man 11 hours 8 min ago view
  • Man you cannot put Soler out there late in games for Playoffs. Yuch...

    The E-Man 11 hours 15 min ago view
  • Such is the life of a fatted calf...

    JoePepitone 11 hours 29 min ago view
  • fowler with a triple in the 4th...he's a HR away from a "natural" cycle

    crunch 12 hours 2 min ago view
  • ...and contreras takes one off the hand and he's in obvious pain. sigh.

    he's staying in the game, though he's wringing his hand out during breaks in the action. aside from that he seems to have no issue giving signs or tossing back to the pitcher.

    ...and he's batting in the cubs half of the following inning. sweet.

    crunch 12 hours 6 min ago view
  • his collapse started on august 21st this it's a slight improvement.

    but wow, what a collapse since then...only 2 out of 7 can be considered good/decent.

    crunch 12 hours 18 min ago view
  • I'm really going to enjoy watching Hammel watch the playoffs.

    Jackstraw 12 hours 36 min ago view
  • The always combustible Jason Hammel

    jacos 12 hours 57 min ago view
  • Hammel :(

    Charlie 12 hours 58 min ago view
  • That was fun.

    Charlie 15 hours 58 min ago view
  • "home field advantage through the playoffs?"

    Except for the away games.

    VirginiaPhil 16 hours 10 min ago view